I was asked recently about the little picture that appears beside my name (and one or two other people’s names) in the comments section of the blog. It’s not a function of the blog itself, but actually a free service called a Gravatar. Avatars have been around forever, and Gravatars take that to a slightly higher level by associating a Globally Recognized Avatar to your account, based on the email address that you use in the comment field of a blog.
It’s incredibly easy to set up a Gravatar. Just create a free account at Gravatar.com, and select a picture to associate with it. I have several Gravatars associated to different email addresses, depending on what blog I am commenting on.. but chances are you will have only the one. Just make sure that whatever email address you register at Gravatar.com, that’s the one that you use when commenting on a blog. Then your Gravatar will appear almost instantly beside your posts, even old posts that you have written. And any time that you want to change the picture (something I’ve been meaning to do now for awhile) you can just log into your account at Gravatar.com and upload another one.
I’d certainly love to see more people using it. It really makes your comments stand out!